Full Text for The Psalter and the Lord's Prayer (Text)

The Psalter and the Lord’s Prayer It would not be difficult to arrange all of [the psalms] according to the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer, and thus to show how the Psalter is entirely taken up in the prayer of Jesus. Bonhoeffer Introduction Our Father who art in heaven. What does this mean? With these words God tenderly invites us to believe that He is our true Father and that we are His true children, so that with all boldness and confidence we may ask Him as dear children ask their dear father. Remembrance of Baptism that gives us access to the Father Psalms 23, 42, 84, 116, 117, 118, 121, 131 First Petition Hallowed be Thy name. What does this mean? God's name is certainly holy in itself, but we pray in this petition that it may be kept holy among us also. How is God's name kept holy? God's name is kept holy when the Word of God is taught in its truth and purity, and we, as the children of God, also lead holy lives according to it. Help us to do this, dear Father in heaven! But anyone who teaches or lives contrary to God's Word profanes the name of God among us. Protect us from this, heavenly Father! Faith and life in God’s name Psalms 8, 15, 16, 50, 52, 68, 76, 78, 80, 83, 86, 89, 95, 96, 105, 106, 115, 124, 135, 138, 145, 148 Second Petition Thy kingdom come. What does this mean? The kingdom of God certainly comes by itself without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it may come to us also. How does God's kingdom come? God's kingdom comes when our heavenly Father gives us His Holy Spirit, so that by His grace we believe His holy Word and lead godly lives here in time and there in eternity. Hearing and keeping God’s Word Psalms 1, 2, 14, 17, 18, 21, 24, 37, 40, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 53, 57, 58, 60, 61, 65, 72, 74, 82, 87, 93, 97, 110, 125, 126, 127, 132, 147 Third Petition Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven What does this mean? The good and gracious will of God is done even without our prayer, but we pray in this petition that it may be done among us also. How is God's will done? God's will is done when he breaks and hinders every evil plan and purpose of the devil, the world, and our sinful nature, which do not want us to hallow God's name or let His kingdom come; and when He strengthens and keeps us firm in His Word and faith until we die. This is His good and gracious will. Strengthening of faith; trust in God’s good will Psalms 19, 33, 41, 49, 62, 63, 66, 67, 71, 73, 77, 81, 85, 92, 94, 101, 108, 112, 114, 119, 122, 128, 129, 133, 134, 137, 144 Fourth Petition Give us this day our daily bread. What does this mean? God certainly gives daily bread to everyone without our prayers, even to all evil people, but we pray in this petition that God would lead us to realize this and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving. What is meant by daily bread? Daily bread includes everything that has to do with the support and needs of the body, such as food, drink, clothing, shoes, house, home, land, animals, money, goods, a devout husband or wife, devout children, devout workers, devout and faithful rulers, good government, good weather, peace, health, self control, good repute- tion, good friends, faithful neighbors, and the like. Thanksgiving Psalms 20, 75, 100, 103, 104, 107, 111, 136 Fifth Petition And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. What does this mean? We pray in this petition that our Father in heaven would not look at our sins, or deny our prayer because of them. We are neither worthy of the things for which we pray, nor have we deserved them, but we ask that He would give them all to us by grace, for we daily sin much and surely deserve nothing but punishment. So we too will sincerely forgive and gladly do good to those who sin against us. Confession and Absolution Psalms 6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130, 143 Sixth Petition And lead us not into temptation. What does this mean? God tempts no one. We pray in this petition that God would guard and keep us so that the devil, the world, and our sinful nature may not deceive us or mislead us into false belief, despair, and other great shame and vice. Although we are attacked by these things, we pray that we may finally overcome them and win the victory. In times of temptation Psalms 7, 13, 26, 91, 139, 141, 142, 146 Seventh Petition But deliver us from evil. What does this mean? We pray in this petition, in summary, that our Father in heaven would rescue us from every evil of body and soul, possessions and reputation, and finally, when our last hour comes, give us a blessed end, and graciously take us from this valley of sorrow to Himself in heaven. Healing and protection; confidence in the face of death Psalms 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12, 25, 28, 30, 31, 35, 36, 38, 39, 54, 55, 59, 64, 69, 70, 79, 88, 90, 109, 120, 123, 140, 143 Conclusion For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen. What does this mean? This means that I should be certain that these petitions are pleasing to our Father in heaven, and are heard by Him; for He Himself has commanded us to pray in this way and has promised to hear us. Amen, amen, means, "yes, yes, it shall be so." Confidence in Christ who is the “Amen” to every promise of God Psalms 9, 22, 27, 29, 34, 56, 98, 99, 113, 149, 150 Prepared by Professor John T. Pless Edited by Professor Paul J. Grime